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Injured Palmer focuses on helping Brumbies' finals push

Dan Palmer will miss the rest of the season due to a toe injury.

Dan Palmer will miss the rest of the season due to a toe injury. Photo: Jeffrey Chan

INJURY ruined prop Dan Palmer's hopes of leaving Australia with a Super Rugby title but the ACT Brumbies front-rower is determined to play a role in the finals - as a part-time coach.

Scrum expert Palmer will miss the Brumbies' bid for a championship after having season-ending foot surgery three weeks ago.

The ''mechanical injury'' in his big toe ended his hopes of playing for the Wallabies against the British and Irish Lions and being part of the Super Rugby play-offs.

Palmer will leave Australian rugby in September to link with French club Grenoble.

But before he goes, Palmer is determined to help the Brumbies' title hopes by being a scrum coach.

''I couldn't put pressure [through my foot] and it was getting impossible for me to do my job for the Brumbies … I couldn't contribute in the way I have to at this level,'' Palmer said.

''It's frustrating, but I'll do whatever I need to do to give the Brumbies the best chance in the finals series. I'll spend a lot of time with the front-rowers and do some work and analysis for them.''

The Brumbies are preparing to play in the finals for the first time since 2004 after finishing the regular season against the Western Force on Saturday night.

They'll go into the play-offs with severely depleted prop stocks. Palmer and Ruaidhri Murphy (knee) are out for the season, leaving just three - the bare minimum fit props on the roster.

The Brumbies still have experienced Wallabies Ben Alexander and hooker Stephen Moore, while Scott Sio and Ruan Smith have been impressive.

Palmer is widely regarded as one of the most technically sound tight-head props in Super Rugby.

But his rise to the top has been hampered by injury - bizarrely the same problem in both feet over the past two seasons.

Palmer made his Test debut against Scotland last year, but was limited to just one Wallabies cap as he managed ligament, bone and joint problems in his big toe.

Less than 12 months on, and it's the same problem - this time in his left foot - and it cruelly ended his immediate Australian career.

The 24-year-old will play in France for at least the next year, and said: ''I'm not leaving Australia to come straight back''.

The set-piece-dominated European style suits Palmer's game.

''I'm excited about what lies ahead in France,'' Palmer said. ''You never know about the future and I might play more Super Rugby down the track.

''I'm going with no regrets … I've got a lot left in me so I'm going to France with an open mind.''

Rugby Internationals 2014

Round 1
Sat, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 18 vs TGA 18 Report Stats
FJI 25 vs ITA 14 Report Stats
NZL 20 vs ENG 15 Report Stats
AUS 50 vs FRA 23 Report Stats
Sun, 08 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 47 vs WXV 13 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 29 Report Stats
USA 6 vs SCO 24 Report Stats
CAN 25 vs JPN 34 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Sat, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 15 vs ITA Report Stats
FJI 45 vs TGA 17 Report Stats
NZL 28 vs ENG 27 Report Stats
AUS 6 vs FRA Report Stats
Sun, 15 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 38 vs WAL 16 Report Stats
CAN 17 vs SCO 19 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 23 Report Stats
USA 29 vs JPN 37 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 3
Sat, 21 JunTimes shown AEST
ARG 19 vs SCO 21 Report Stats
FJI 13 vs SAM 18 Report Stats
JPN 26 vs ITA 23 Report Stats
AUS 39 vs FRA 13 Stats
NZL 36 vs ENG 13 Report Stats
Sun, 22 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 31 vs WAL 30 Report Stats
USA 38 vs CAN 35 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 4
Sun, 29 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 55 vs SCO 6 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 5
Sun, 02 NovTimes shown AEDT
BAR 36 vs AUS 40 Report Stats
USA 6 vs NZL 74 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 6
Sun, 09 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 24 vs SAM 13 Report Stats
ENG 21 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
WAL 28 vs AUS 33 Report Stats
FRA 40 vs FJI 14 Report Stats
IRE 29 vs RSA 15 Report Stats
SCO 41 vs ARG 31 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 7
Sun, 16 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 18 vs ARG 20 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs RSA 31 Report Stats
WAL 17 vs FJI 13 Report Stats
SCO 16 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
FRA 29 vs AUS 26 Report Stats
Mon, 17 NovTimes shown AEDT
IRE 49 vs GEO 7 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 8
Sun, 23 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 6 vs RSA 22 Report Stats
SCO 37 vs TGA 12 Report Stats
IRE 26 vs AUS 23 Report Stats
WAL 16 vs NZL 34 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs SAM 9 Report Stats
FRA 13 vs ARG 18 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 9
Sun, 30 NovTimes shown AEDT
ENG 26 vs AUS 17 Report Stats
WAL 12 vs RSA 6 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
 
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